City Attorney


Representing city government, including boards and commissions, is the primary responsibility of the city attorney. Drafting municipal ordinances and resolutions for consideration by the common council and its various committees, are integral parts of the function of this office.

The city attorney advises and renders legal opinions on specific issues to ensure that actions taken by elected officials, city departments and boards and commissions, will not conflict with applicable laws and administrative rules.

Other Duties

Other duties include representation of the city in the South Milwaukee Municipal Court and in all other legal actions to which the city is a party, whether in a state or federal court - consummating real estate transactions in which the city has an interest - providing assistance in negotiations and administering labor agreements between the city and employee groups, reviewing municipal contracts and official notices for compliance with legal requirements and acting as a legislative representative for the city before other governmental bodies such as the County Board and State Legislature.

South Milwaukee City Attorneys

  • 1901 to 1922 W. J. Riley
  • 1922 to 1930 Cy Thieme
  • 1930 to 1932 C. J. O’Brien
  • 1932 to 1934 Cy Thieme
  • 1934 to 1938 C. J. O’Brien
  • 1938 to 1942 J. T. McCarrier
  • 1942 to 1944 J. T. McCarrier/M. Dockery
  • 1944 to 1946 M. Dockery
  • 1946 to 1950 R. E. Mullins
  • 1950 to 1952 Clarence O’Brien
  • 1952 to 1964 Richard P. Rouse
  • 1964 to 1972 Francis W Cathlina
  • 1972 to 1976 Kenneth Bukowski
  • 1976 to 1982 Francis W Cathlina
  • 1982 to 2016 Joseph Murphy
  • 2016 to Present Christopher Smith